For decades now the idea of elves is one associated to the work of JRR Tolkein and the Lord of the Rings and that of faeries more akin to Tinkerbell and small pixie-like creatures that benevolently help humans in need of aid.
But the Fey Folk as they were once known had a far different appearance and behaviours than what we know today.
Some were small beings, such as gnomes and other ‘wee folk’ that lived in forests. What are called elves today began as tall, almost angelic beings with special powers. They have an ethereal other-worldly quality to them and hint at knowledge that we cannot understand.
The stories concerning them are often related around ways to protect yourself from them. Cold Iron was a defence, as were the plants such as Rowan and other herbs.
Stories also talk about the fey folk snatching babies and taking them away to their magical realm, replacing them with changelings (It was this concept that was used in the 1986 film Labyrinth).
There seems to be some commonality in beliefs about Fey Folk. While they do live in forests rather than towns they seem to have their own realm in some other dimension or plane of existence. It is from here that they come to move amongst us, travelling between their world and ours in some unknown way.
Those tales of people who have travelled to this realm of the faeries may find, when they return that while they were seemingly gone for only a few hours, incredible lengths of time have passed in the ‘real world’ – even years or decades.
If a person travels to their home they may find themselves being offered food by the fey folk. But to eat faerie food is to then be trapped in their realm with no hope of return.
To us they often seem stunningly beautiful, yet if they are truly seen their features are far less attractive, with thin cruel mouths and small sharp noses. Their beauty is derived from a magic called glamour, a charm that makes us see them in the best possible way.
It is interesting as to how many elements of the fey folk are still in stories today – those concerning aliens and abductions.
People who have seen aliens often describe seeing something else (like owls), an effect not dissimilar to the old glamour and only come to a realization of what they saw when under regressive hypnosis. Aliens, like the Fey Folk, seem to have an interest in humans as a species and taking us from our world to theirs.
Could it be that we are simply seeing the ancient stories still occurring, but in light of how language has changed we are reporting it differently? And does this mean that aliens may not be from a different world, but from a different plane or dimension rather than a different planet? So many aspects of the paranormal have connections with other fields and shows us that trying to find one, all inclusive answer is not the way forward.
But just remember the next time a elf offers you a meal, politely decline…